We’re back with another Bookstagrammer of the Week — a Bookstr series that dives into the depths of Bookstagram, the section of Instagram dedicated entirely to the book lovers of the world. This week, we’re talking classic literature, Bookstagram anniversaries, and advice for aspiring Bookstagrammers. All of this and more with our Bookstagrammer of the Week: Vebri of @vebriisfebruary!
Vebri is February
Bookstagram | Goodreads
First off, take a scroll through @vebriisfebruary on Instagram and then come back to learn all about her!
It is obvious, reading is a passion of yours and we’re curious — when did you first get into reading?
In my early years, I wasn’t encouraged to read so much until I saw my mum reading books. I cannot exactly remember, but it was either Danielle Steel or John Grisham, and I really want to do what my mum did, but of course, Danielle Steel isn’t appropriate for a five-year-old child. So, one day she bought me a book as big as myself, with giant letters and amazing impressionism illustrations. The set of books was on tales, like Brother Grimms and Hans Christian Andersen. I can’t really say I read it, since I barely read at that age, but seeing the book, the illustrations, and trying so hard to read it (my mum was a single parent, she had no time to read for me) — it felt like a great escape. Like I was in the tale. From there, I asked my mum for a book at every birthday or every achievement I got in school.
Now, Vebri’s account on Instagram is still relatively new. And in being new to the Bookstagram community, we’d love to know something!
What inspired you to start your Bookstagram and what does it mean to you?
I always use Instagram as a tool for communication with friends or family, or at least people I know IRL. It’s pretty much just an extension of my communication platform. Until one day, I saw gorgeous pictures of books and I thought what if I create my own take on it. I mean I’m far from original or authentic but since I like books and art and history, why don’t I give it a try and create my Bookstagram that has more variety — voila! Here I am! haha.
Let’s be honest, your account is just stunning! You feature quite a few classic novels on your feed. And we know this might be a hard question to answer, but we’ve got to ask!
What’s your favorite classic novel and why?
Good god! Thank you so much, I’m glad you find it that way! Yes, I do. Funnily enough, I tried this test about ‘what kind of reader are you?’ and the first result is Time Traveler and I think it’s spot on! Since the first time I read books I like the experience of travelling through time and space in a flip of a page, hence I enjoy reading classics more than the contemporary ones. My favourite classics are Maurice by E.M. Forster, Brave New World by Aldous Huxley, and The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde — for the latter I must say, I love the uncensored one because it explains and validates Basil, the painter.
I’m seeing a lot of European landmarks in your feed which really contribute to the dark and light academia vibe that you’re going for!
Where are you from? And do you have a favorite bookstore close to home?
I’m originally from Jakarta, Indonesia. The city used to have this bookshop called Kinokuniya but unfortunately, the shop closed. A couple of years ago I moved to London, and even though both cities are metropolises, in London there is an abundance of bookshops, both chain and independent.
My favourites are the classic Daunt Books in Marylebone, Hatchard in Piccadilly, Waterstone in Gower St and Word on the Water in Regent’s Canal but often I go to Oxfam Book for secondhand books in perfect condition.
Speaking of being relatively new — you just celebrated your one-year Bookstagram anniversary at the beginning of this month. Congratulations!
For others who are wanting to start their own Bookstagram accounts, what piece of advice would you offer them?
I did! It’s odd how time flies! As much as I want to say “Don’t be too preoccupied with the metrics, or followers, or read something that will make people come to your page even though you don’t like it”, I realised when you say ‘do not’ it’s more likely that you will do it.
So, my advice on starting a Bookstagram account will be, create something that’s more aligned to your interest. For example, you are probably more into high fantasy or nonfiction. Well, if that’s what you like, share it! Your interest will show in your post and how you describe things will exude your passion. Another one would be to have conversations with the people in the community. It still feels surreal for me to actually make some friends along the way (even though our cups of tea in books are actually very different). Your style will develop as you consistently create content, everything won’t be perfect in the earlier stage and will never be perfect. It’s a constant development. Just like a book, you’ll have your own character development too! Therefore enjoy the process.
And we have just one final question for our Bookstagrammer of the Week, @vebriisfebruary! The new year is almost upon us and we’re all starting to set in some resolutions. However, some of those 2022 goals are still around and waiting to be ticked off.
Do you have any reading goals you hope to accomplish before 2022 comes to a close?
I always put in 12 books every year because I want to prevent myself from reading more books, but ended up not enjoying them. So far, I managed to read more than 12 books, and most of them I actually enjoyed so, yeah, I think I did well for this year already.
Thank you for joining us in talking with Vebri of @vebriisfebruary, our Bookstagrammer of the Week! Be sure to check out Vebri’s feature on the Bookstr Instagram page, @bookstrofficial, for some amazing graphics!
Craving more Bookstagrammer recommendations? Check out our previous article that features three Indigenous creators who are talking NDN representation in the bookish world by clicking here!